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OD wiper
7650974 OD wiper
Patent Drawings:Drawing: 7650974-2    Drawing: 7650974-3    Drawing: 7650974-4    Drawing: 7650974-5    
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Inventor: Light, et al.
Date Issued: January 26, 2010
Application: 11/278,563
Filed: April 4, 2006
Inventors: Light; Gerard M. (Marshall, MI)
Gautsche; Clinton J. (Union City, MI)
DeHart; Grover C. (Marshall, NC)
Assignee: BorgWarner Inc. (Auburn Hills, MI)
Primary Examiner: Bonck; Rodney H
Assistant Examiner:
Attorney Or Agent:
U.S. Class: 192/58.7; 192/58.61
Field Of Search: 192/58.7; 192/58.61
International Class: F16D 35/00
U.S Patent Documents:
Foreign Patent Documents:
Other References:









Abstract: A viscous fan drive having improved pumping efficiency from removing fluid from a fluid operating chamber to a fluid reservoir chamber is achieved by providing a wiper element that is located within the radial clearance between the clutch and the housing that effectively seals leakage paths leading (upstream) and trailing the wiper. The wiper element includes a radial tang that is positioned within a corresponding slot of the cover wall. The wiper element also has a pair of spaced apart arms extending from the radial tang portion each having a radial outer surface that has a similar radius as the cover wall and a radial inner surface has a similar radius as the clutch. The wiper element also preferably includes details designed to seal the radial inner surface to the outer periphery of the clutch during fan drive operation and a locating detail to aid in assembly.
Claim: What is claimed is:

1. A viscous fan drive assembly used on an internal combustion engine comprising: an output-coupling member including a housing member coupled to a cover member, said covermember including cover wall portion having an axial-extending notch; an actuator shaft partially disposed within said output-coupling member; an input-coupling assembly coupled to said actuator shaft and including an input-coupling member, saidinput-coupling-assembly and said actuator shalt capable of rotating at a given input speed; a fluid operating chamber including a shear space defined by said input-coupling member and said cover member; a fluid reservoir chamber; at least one fillhole contained in said input coupling member fluidically coupling said fluid reservoir chamber to said fluid operating chamber; a scavenge hole including an opening contained in said cover member fluidically coupling said fluid operating chamber to saidfluid reservoir chamber; and a wiper element coupled within said notch and contained between said cover wall portion and an outer periphery of said input coupling member; said wiper element including only one pair of spaced apart arm members extendingfrom a radially extending tang member, said arm members extending in a circumferential direction and both extending in the same direction, wherein said opening is disposed between said pair of spaced apart arm members; wherein each of said pair ofspaced apart arm members includes a radial outer surface that has a similar radius as said cover wall portion along the entire length of said arm members and a radial inner surface that has a similar radius as the outer periphery of said input couplingassembly along the entire length of said arm members.

2. The fan drive of claim 1, wherein the axial height of said wiper element is substantially similar to the axial height of said cover wall portion.

3. The fan drive of claim 1, wherein said radial tang member includes a locating detail for loosely fixing said wiper element within said notch.

4. The fan drive of claim 1, wherein the longitudinal length of each of said arm members is substantially greater than the longitudinal length of said tang member.

5. The fan drive of claim 1, wherein said radial outer surface of each of said pair of spaced apart arm members is chamfered in a radial direction away from said cover wall portion from an outer edge to an inner edge.

6. The fan drive of claim 5, wherein said radial outer surface of each of said pair of arm members includes an outer tip region beveled towards and terminating at said radial inner surface.

7. The fan drive of claim 6, wherein said radial inner surface of each of said pair of arm members includes an inner tip region beveled towards and terminating at said outer tip region.

8. The fan drive of claim 1, wherein said radial outer surface of each of said pair of arm members includes an outer tip region beveled towards and terminating at said radial inner surface.

9. The fan drive of claim 8, wherein said radial inner surface of each of said pair of arm members includes an inner tip region beveled towards and terminating at said outer tip region.

10. The viscous fan drive assembly of claim 1, wherein said arm members extend substantially perpendicular to said tang member.
Description: TECHNICAL FIELD

The invention relates generally to fan drive systems and more specifically to a viscous fan drive having a modified and improved spool valve.

BACKGROUND ART

The present invention relates to fluid-coupling devices of the type including both fluid operating chamber and a fluid reservoir chamber, and specifically to the providing a more efficient pumping mechanism for removing fluid from the operatingchamber.

Although the present invention may be used advantageously in fluid-coupling devices having various configurations and applications, it is especially advantageous in a coupling device of the type used to drive a radiator cooling fan of an internalcombustion engine, and will be described in connection therewith.

Fluid-coupling devices ("fan drives") of the viscous shear type have been popular for many years for driving engine cooling fans, primarily because their use results in substantial saving of engine horsepower. The typical fluid-coupling deviceoperates in the engaged, relatively higher speed condition only when cooling is needed, and operates in a disengaged, relatively lower speed condition when little or no cooling is required. These devices typically use integrally formed wipers to controlthe amount of viscous fluid exiting the working chamber to control the relative engagement of the fan drive at a given input speed. Electronically controlled fan drives achieve a very low disengaged fan speed by removing nearly all the viscous fluidfrom the fan drive labyrinth, or working chamber, during disengaged operations. This is desirable in that it minimizes parasitic power losses in the vehicle while improving fuel economy.

However, these systems are known to have less damping and are prone to troublesome vibration. Countermeasures used to combat this problem are to use a relatively loose fan drive bearing and to operate with higher than normal axial clearancesbetween the clutch plate (rotor) and the housings (cover and body). This allows the clutch and housing to move relatively independently when the system is in resonance, reducing vibration amplitude. In most conventional fan drive systems, the wiper islocated adjacent to an axial face of the clutch. However, locating the wiper here on the fan drive typically results in contact between the clutch and wiper during resonance that is unacceptable.

To combat this resonance problem, some fan drive systems have provided a wiper that is located within the radial clearance between the clutch and the housing. This wiper is thus generically known as an OD wiper, or outer diameter wiper. However, leakage paths near the wiper due to the large axial internal clearances between the cover, clutch and body are the primary culprit affecting robust performance of these types of fan drives.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention addresses some of the issues described above by providing a wiper element that is located within the radial clearance between the clutch and the housing that effectively seals leakage paths leading (upstream) and trailingthe wiper.

The wiper element of the present invention is a molded plastic part having a radial tang that is positioned within a corresponding slot of the cover wall. The wiper element also has a pair of spaced apart arms extending from the radial tangportion each having a radial outer surface that is coincident with the cover wall. The wiper height is the same, less sliding clearance, as the cover wall for good sealing at the top and bottom interfaces. Further, the clutch periphery is sized to givesliding clearance to the wiper. A locating detail may be added to the radial tang to loosely affix the wiper element within the slot for assembly efficiency.

In alternative embodiments, the wiper element is designed to push the radial arms away from the cover wall and towards the outer periphery of the clutch as the fluid-coupling device is operating to more effectively capture the viscous fluid andmove it through the scavenge hole as it is flung outwardly from the fluid operating chamber to the cover wall. This increases fluid pressure near the scavenge hole to improve pump out efficiency at any given engine speed. To accomplish this, the wiperarms are preferably chamfered inward towards the space between the radial arms. In addition, the ends of the are beveled or otherwise slanted along a surface such that the extreme ends are located further away from the cover wall than a middle portionof the ends so that the arms are pushed towards the outer periphery of the clutch as viscous fluid is scraped as the fluid operating device is operating.

The wiper element of the present offers many advantages over prior art wiper systems. First, the presence of the long spaced apart arms provides sealing means upstream of the scavenge hole which can accommodate a fan drive that has a loosesupport bearing arrangement, effectively sealing leakage paths. In addition, the present wiper is formed of a polymer material that may be abraded during usage during high temperature operation without damaging the viscous fluid. This allows designclearances between the internal fan drive parts (clutch, body and cover) to avoid rub during resonance operations and further allows design clearances to be chosen which optimizes performance and reducing disengagement time variation.

Other features, benefits and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following description of the invention, when viewed in accordance with the attached drawings and appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THEDRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a fluid-coupling device according to one preferred embodiment of the present invention in the disengaged position;

FIG. 2A is a section view of FIG. 1 taken along line 2-2 showing the fluid-coupling device in a disengaged position;

FIG. 2B is a close-up view of a portion of FIG. 2A;

FIG. 3 is a section view of FIG. 1 taken along line 2-2 showing the fluid-coupling device in a fully engaged position;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the one side of the clutch according to a preferred embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of one side of the cover member and wiper according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the wiper element according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 7 is a section view of FIG. 6 taken along line 7-7; and

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the wiper element according to another preferred embodiment of the present invention.

BEST MODE(S) FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

Referring now to the drawings, which are not intended to limit the invention, FIGS. 1-3 illustrates one preferred form of a fluid-coupling device 10 ("viscous fan drive") of a type utilizing the present invention. The fluid-coupling device 10includes an input-coupling member, or clutch, generally designated 11, and an output-coupling member, or assembly, generally designated 13. The assembly 13 includes a housing member (body) 15, and a cover member (enclosure) 17, the members 15 and 17being secured together by a rollover of the outer periphery of the cover member 17, as is well known in the art.

The fluid-coupling device 10 is adapted to be driven by a liquid cooled engine, and in turn, drives a radiator-cooling fan, neither of which is shown herein. The fan may be attached to the housing member 15 by any suitable means, such as isgenerally well known in the art, and as is illustrated in the above-incorporated patents. It should be understood, however, that the use of the present invention is not limited to any particular configuration of fluid-coupling device, or fan mountingarrangement, or any particular application for the fan drive, except as is specifically noted hereinafter. For example, the present invention could be used with a fan drive of the type adapted to have the radiator-cooling fan attached to the covermember, rather than to the body member.

As best shown in FIGS. 2A, 2B and 3, the coupling device 10 includes an input-coupling assembly 38 on which the input-coupling member 11, or clutch, is mounted. The input-coupling assembly 38 is rotatably driven, such as by means of anhexagonal, internally threaded portion 21, which would typically be threaded onto an externally threaded shaft extending from the engine water pump. The assembly 38 functions as a support for the inner race of a bearing set 25, which is seated on theinside diameter of the housing member 15. The input coupling assembly 38 is also coupled to and surrounds an actuator shaft 19. The forward end 19b of an actuator shaft 19 is slidingly engaged between the assembly 38 and an opening defined by a hubportion 29 of the input-coupling member 11. As a result, rotation of the assembly 38 causes rotation of the input-coupling member 11. An armature 23 is also coupled to a portion of the actuator shaft 19, which is kept in place within the assembly 38 bya plug 32. The armature 23 is guided within the assembly using a close fitting bushing 145.

The housing member 15 and the cover member 17 cooperate to define a fluid chamber, which is separated by means of a substantially circular valve disk 31 and reservoir cover 59, into a fluid operating chamber 33 and a fluid reservoir chamber 35. The valve disk 31 is operatively coupled with the forward end 19b of the actuator shaft 19 by screw 27 and is disposed within the reservoir cover 59 and the input-coupling member 11. The cover member 17 and the input-coupling member 11 define the fluidoperating chamber 33, while the reservoir cover 59 and the input-coupling member 11 define the fluid reservoir 35.

As best shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, the input-coupling member 11 includes a plurality of annular lands 53 that are located outwardly from the hub 29. A plurality of grooves 71 are contained between each respective pair of lands 53. The adjacentsurface of the cover member 17 includes a plurality of corresponding annular lands 55 and associated grooves 73. The annular lands 53, 55 are interdigitated to define a serpentine-shaped viscous shear space 54 therebetween. The input coupling member 11and cover member 17 also each include a pair of radial slots 56, 61 and 81, 83 that are used on the input-coupling member 11 and cover 17 to help get viscous fluid in and out of the viscous shear space 54 of the operating chamber 33. The input couplingmember 11 optionally include one of more openings 37 located within the lands 53 and grooves 71 that extend through the member 11 to its rearward side 89. The rearward side 89 and housing member 15 therefore define a chamber 42.

The input-coupling member 11 also included a pair of cold pump out slots 117, 115 defined between the rollover 222, and a sealing surface 123. The reservoir cover 59 seals onto the top of the sealing surface 123 held in place by the rollover 222(shown before the rollover operation). The slots 117 and 115 and reservoir cover 59 therefore define a passageways 119 and 121, respectively. The passageways 119, 121, being oriented 180 degrees opposite each other around the outer periphery of thecover 17 and clutch 11 act as an antidrainback chamber when the cover 17 is not rotating (i.e. when the fan drive is disengaged), therein minimizing morning sickness that typically occurs in viscous type clutch systems.

The cover 59 and input coupling member 11 also define a pair of fill holes 112, 114. The fill holes 112, 114 are preferably disposed 180 degrees opposite each other around the periphery of the cover 17 and input-coupling member 11 with respectto one another and are located at the junction between the reservoir chamber 35 and the respective passageways 119, 121. As will be described in further detail below, the fill holes 112, 114 may be opened or covered (i.e. closed), depending upon therelative positioning of the valve disk 31 relative to the fill holes 112, 114, to control the amount of viscous fluid entering the operating chamber 33 and shear space 54 through the passageways 119, 121. Varying the amount of viscous fluid within theshear space 54 varies the wetted area of the shear space 54 and thereby controls the amount of torque transferred from the input coupling member 11 to the cover member 17 at a given engine input speed.

The cover member 17 also includes a coupled pumping element 47, also referred to as a "wiper" element, operable to engage the relatively rotating fluid flung outward from the shear space 54 and chamber 42, and generate a localized region, orscavenge area 43 of relatively higher fluid pressure. As a result, the pumping element 47 continually pumps a small quantity of viscous fluid from the shear space 54 and chamber 42 back into the reservoir chamber 35 through a scavenge port 161 coupledto a radial passage 26 defined by the cover member 17 at a given engine input speed, in a manner well known in the art. The wiper element 47 is coupled within a notch 57 in the cover member 17 and is positioned between a cover wall portion 127 and theouter periphery 129 of the input-coupling member 11 is best shown and will be described further below in FIGS. 5-8.

Referring now to FIGS. 1-3, the actuator subassembly 20 includes a plurality of coils 77 contained within a bobbin 44. The coils 77 are electrically coupled to an external controller 46 through wires 45 contained within an electrical connector51 coupled to the bobbin 44. The external controller 46 is also electrically coupled to a Hall effect sensor 48 through connector 51. The Hall effect sensor 48 senses the rotational speed of the housing member 15 via one or more pole pieces 49 coupledto the housing member 15 and sends an electrical impulse to the controller 46 as a function of the measured rotational speed. A plurality of other sensors 39, including, for example, an engine temperature sensor, are also electrically connected to thecontroller 46 and provide electrical signals regarding a particular engine operating parameter.

The controller 46 interprets the electrical signals from the Hall effect sensor 48 and other sensors 39 and sends an electrical signal to the coils 77 to control the relative positioning of the valve disk 31 to control the relative engagement ordisengagement of the input-coupling device 11.

As may be best seen in FIG. 2, when the coupling device 11 is rotating and in the disengaged position, a spring 50 biases the valve disk 31 to cover the fill holes 112, 114, and hence substantially all of the viscous fluid in the device 10 iscontained within the fluid reservoir chamber 35. The spring 50, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, is coupled along the outer periphery of the actuator shaft 19 and between the valve disk 31 and the end of the internally threaded portion 21. In the disengagedposition, viscous fluid is prevented by the valve disk 31 from entering the operating chamber 33 and shear space 54 to drive cover member 17. In FIG. 3, when the coupling device 11 is rotating and in the fully engaged position, viscous fluid flowsfreely through the respective fill hole 112, 114 to the operating chamber 33 to drive the cover member 17 and coupled fan as a function of the given input speed and amount of viscous fluid contained in the shear space 54. Each is described in furtherdetail below.

To engage the fan drive, as shown in FIG. 3, the external controller 46 sends an electrical signal through the actuator subassembly 20 to the electrical coil 77, therein creating a magnetic flux through the input-coupling assembly 38 within theviscous fan drive 10, including the armature shaft 19, armature 23 and plug 32, but not through a non-magnetic metal wafer portion 122 welded to a portion of the assembly 38. The armature 23, which is common steel, reacts in response to the magneticflux to axial move in a direction away from the spring 50 (i.e. moving in a direction against the spring 50 (downward in FIG. 3)) within the assembly 38 and along the bushing 145. As the actuator shaft 19 and valve disk 31 are coupled to the armature23, they are pulled downward as well, thereby causing valve disk 31 to unseal from the reservoir cover 59 and uncover the cast-in fill holes 112, 114, thereby allowing the movement of viscous fluid from the reservoir chamber 35 to the operating chamber33 through the respective passageways 119, 121 and through a respective pair of slots 56, 81 or 61, 83. This viscous fluid then enters the shear space 54 between the set of respective lands 53, 55 and 65, 67. As the fluid fills the shear space 54 ittransmits torque from the input coupling member 11 to the cover member as it is sheared, thereby driving the cover member 17 (and hence a fan remotely coupled to the cover member 17) as a function of the input speed to the input-coupling member 11 and asa function of the amount of viscous fluid contained in the shear space 54, as is understood by those of ordinary skill in the art. This is the so-called engaged position, as shown in FIG. 3.

By decreasing the amount of power to the actuator subassembly 20, and hence magnetic flux available to pull the armature 23 downward, the spring 50 biases back towards its natural position (back toward the position as shown in FIG. 3), therebyurging the valve disk 31 back towards the reservoir cover 59 to partially cover the fill hole 112, 114. This allows viscous fluid to enter the operating chamber 33 through the fill hole 112, 114, but at a rate less than the fully engaged position. Thisis the so-called mid-range or partially engaged position. In this position, the cover member 17 rotates at a rate slower than the fully engaged position as a function of the relatively lesser amount of viscous fluid entering the shear space 54.

In the absence of electrical actuation, as shown in FIG. 2, the spring 50 biases back to its natural position and therein urges the valve disk 31 upwardly to seal against the reservoir cover 59 and cover the fill hole 112, 114. This preventsviscous fluid from entering the operating chamber 54, and therein prevents the viscous engagement of the cover member 17 as a result.

The amount of electrical power supplied in terms of pulse width modulation from the external controller 46 and power source, and hence the external controller 46 determines the amount of magnetic flux created to drive the armature 23 in response. The controller receives a set of electrical inputs from various engine sensors 38, and Hall effect sensor 48. When the controller 46 determines that one or more of these sensors is sensing an engine operating conditions outside the desired range, theexternal controller 46 and power source will send electrical signal to the coil 77. Thus, for example, if the external controller 46 determines that the engine coolant temperature is too high as measured by sensor 39, a signal may be sent from thecontroller 46 to the actuator subassembly 20 to activate the coil 77 to a desired pulse width, therein pulling the armature 23 to partially or fully uncover the valve disk 31 from fill holes 112, 114.

Of course, as one of skill in the art appreciates, the actual amount of pulse width modulation necessary to move the valve 31 between a fully engaged and disengaged position is dependent upon many factors. For example, the size and shape of thespring 50 itself is a major factor is the amount of pulse width modulation necessary to move the armature 23. A stiffer or larger spring 50 may require a larger pulse width to achieve a similar biasing of the spring 50 as compared with a more flexibleor smaller spring.

Further, the size of the fill holes 112, 114 may affect the amount of biasing necessary. For example, clutch 11 with larger fill holes 112, 114 may only require the valve disk 31 to slightly uncover one or both of the fill holes 112, 114 inorder to provide adequate viscous fluid flow to the operating chamber 33 and shear space 54.

Referring now to FIG. 6-7, a perspective view of the wiper element 47 in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the present invention is depicted. The wiper element 47 is preferably formed in a conventional molding, stamping or extrusionprocess or other similar manufacturing process from a durable, high temperature and chemically resistant hard plastic material such as polyetherimide. The wiper element 47 has a pair of spaced apart arms 113 extending from the radial tang portion 121each having a radial outer surface 125 that has a similar radius as the cover wall portion 127 and a radial inner surface 169 that has a similar radius as the outer periphery 129 of the input coupling assembly 11. The wiper element 47 has a first andsecond axial surface 131, 133. The distance between the first and second axial surface 131, 133, or height h, is preferably the same as the height of the cover wall portion 127, less sliding clearance.

As best shown in FIG. 5, the radial tang 121 of the wiper element 47 of FIGS. 6 and 7 is positioned within a corresponding slot or notch 57 of a cover wall portion 127 of the cover 17. The radial tang 121 may include a locating detail 134 thatfits within a corresponding hole 136 in the cover 17 and loosely fixes and locates the wiper element 47 within the notch 57 during assembly to aid in assembly efficiency. The arms 113 are positioned between the cover wall portion 127 of the cover 17 andthe outer periphery 129 of the input-coupling device 11. The thickness t of the wiper element 47 is matches the radial clearance between the cover wall portion 127 and the outer periphery 129, less manufacturing tolerance and assembly variation, toensure that there is not an interference fit between the wiper element 47, the input-coupling device 11, and the cover 17 y. When assembled the first axial surface 131 is coincident with the inner surface 135 of the cover 17, while the second axialsurface 133 is coincident with inner surface 137 of the housing member 15 at the top of chamber 42. The scavenge port 161 is exposed within the opening 163 created between the spaced apart arms 113.

The arms 113 extend a distance d forward from the opening 163 of the scavenge port 161 so as to create a high pressure area 43 that helps to pump viscous fluid away from the shear space 54 and chamber 42 and through the opening 163 of thescavenge port 161. The longitudinal length of the arms 113 is several times the length of the body member.

As the input coupling assembly 11 rotates at a given engine speed, the arms 113 of "scrape" the viscous fluid that has been propelled radially outwardly towards the cover wall portion 127 from the shear space 54 and from the chamber 42 and movesit within the opening 163 to the scavenge port 161. The pressure of the viscous fluid being propelled radially outwardly also seals the radial inner surface 169 of the arms 113 of the wiper element 47 against the outer periphery 129 of the inputcoupling assembly 11, and therefore prevents leakage path for the fluid between the radial inner surface 169 and outer periphery 129.

As best shown in FIGS. 6 and 7, the arms 113 preferably include one or more design features that function to aid in pushing the radial inner surface 169 of the arms 113 against the outer periphery 129 of the input coupling assembly 11 and awayfrom the cover wall portion 17 as the input coupling assembly rotates.

As best seen in FIG. 7, the arms 113 are chamfered downward away from the cover wall portion 127 along the radial outer surface 125 from its outer edge 151 to its inner edge 153. Thus, fluid "scraped" by the wiper element is directed between thearms 113 and pushes the wiper element 47 in a direction towards the outer periphery 129 and away from the cover wall portion 127 as the input coupling assembly 11 rotates, therein eliminating clearance between the radial inner surface 169 and the outerperiphery 129. Further, in this condition, the wiper element 47 rides on a thin film of the viscous fluid contained between the cover wall portion 127 and the outer periphery 129.

In conjunction with the chamfering in FIG. 7, as best shown in FIG. 6, an outer tip portion 155 of the radial outer surface 125 of each of the arms 113 may also be beveled in a direction towards said radial inner surface 169. Thus, as viscousfluid "scraped" by the arms 113 over the beveled tip portion 155 and radial outer surface 125, the fluid pressure on the radial outer surface 125 pushes the wiper element 47 towards the outer periphery 129 and away from the cover wall portion 127 as theinput coupling assembly 11 rotates, therein substantially sealing the radial inner surface 169 against the outer periphery 129.

In an alternative arrangement (not shown), the wiper element 47 may be formed without the chamfering shown in FIG. 7, but with the beveled outer tip portion 155 as shown in FIG. 6, and still fall within the spirit of the present invention.

In another alternative arrangement, as shown in FIG. 8, the radial inner surface 169 may also include an inner tip portion 171 that is beveled towards said radial outer surface 125. The outer tip portion 155 and inner tip portion 169 terminateinto one another at an outermost point 173 of the arm 113 located furthest from the radial tang 121. While not shown, the alternative embodiment of FIG. 8 may also include the chamfering described above in FIG. 7 and/or the locating detail 134 and stillfall within the spirit of the present invention.

In addition, while the preferred embodiment of the wiper element 47 is described herein for use on an electronically controlled viscous fan drive in FIGS. 1-7 above, the invention is not limited to these devices. It is contemplated that thewiper element 47 may be used on any type of viscous fan drive wherein it is desirous to create a high pressure area corresponding to an opening designed to remove viscous fluid from a clutch shearing zone. Thus, the wiper element 47 may be used onmechanically controlled viscous fan drives in which fluid flow into the operating chamber is controlled by some non-electronic means such as a bimetallic valve. The wiper element may also be used on viscous fan drives in which fluid flow from thereservoir chamber to the operating chamber is not controlled.

The wiper element of the present offers many advantages over prior art wiper systems. First, the presence of the long spaced apart arms provides sealing means upstream of the scavenge hole which can accommodate a fan drive has a loose supportbearing arrangement without creating leakage paths. In addition, the present wiper is formed of a durable chemically resistant polymer material such as polyetherimide that may be abraded during usage during high temperature operation without damagingthe viscous fluid. This allows large design clearances between the internal fan drive parts (clutch, body and cover) to avoid rub during resonance operations and further allows design clearances to be chosen which optimizes performance and reducingdisengagement time variation.

While the invention has been described in connection with one embodiment, it will be understood that the invention is not limited to that embodiment. On the contrary, the invention covers all alternatives, modifications, and equivalents as maybe included within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.

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